From Benjamin Babine, Abuja
Following recent strike threats from the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), the federal government and the the union met Thursday to review the implementation of agreements reached to suspend the previous nine-month strike.
In statement signed by the Deputy Press Director, Mr Charles Akpan, the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, said he will be meeting with the ASUU leadership Friday in hopes of maintaining the present industrial peace.
In the agreement reached with ASUU, the federal government had accepted, among other things, the union’s demand to pay lecturers’ salaries withheld during their strike.
It also approved the release of N40 billion as earned allowances to university workers, and N30 billion as a revitalisation fund to fix dilapidated infrastructure in the institutions.
Other agreements for which timelines for their implementation were contained in the agreement signed include: setting up of new visitation panels for universities and embarking on measures to check proliferation of state universities and poor funding by state governments.
The Chairman of the University of Ibadan branch of ASUU, Prof Ayo Akinwole, had recently said the federal government had not kept to its promise.
‘While ASUU as a union and her members as individuals in various branches have remained faithful to this agreement by returning to classes and performing their respective duties, the federal government, true to type, has reneged on it’s part,’ he had stated.
In hopes of averting a further strike, the federal government scheduled the meeting with ASUU to consider how to implement the agreements.